July 5, 2007
if cats aren't your thing, there's always dooce
Dearest Bug,

I can’t believe I have to drop you off tomorrow morning, for the second time 15 days, to have the people in white coats gas you and cut into your precious skin. Your last black threads were only removed two days ago. I know, kid. I know as you are looking at me as I write this. It doesn’t seem fair, does it? Yes, it’s even more unjust than the fact that I have only once let you outside into the world since 2002, when our experiment with a cat harness on Capitol Hill went terribly, horribly awry.

I’m sorry that you have this awful cancer. I’m sorry that when I felt the lump months ago I chalked it up to scar tissue or a recent run in with Cricket’s back legs. I promise you that it didn’t grow – it was only the size of the head of the pin – for months and months. Know that when I saw you walk across the hardwoods two weeks ago, when I saw your right side unbelievably swollen and knew given my constant hugging of you that it had not been there the day before, know that I rushed you to the emergency vet within minutes. Know that I will never, ever, ever get over the feeling that I may have failed you, that you might not be losing this leg or in this danger at all if I had been more vigilant. I did what I thought was best. I truly promise you that.

Know too my sweet kid that I love few things more in this life than being your mom. We’re always straight with each other, so why would we stop now: I know you know it wasn’t always this way. When I opened my apartment door in Tallahassee in 1999 to your screaming, tiny face, the dog-loving me late for work and you simply hungry and homeless, I wanted nothing more than to toss your hairy self into someone else’s arms. I berated my roommate for having fed you canned Chicken of the Sea the day prior; what did I need with one of those straggly cats yelling at my door, anyway?

But things change, and your gentle kind grew on me. In time you became the involuntary charge of a fellow grad student who kept you as an outside cat in my very apartment complex. I often wonder if you envied the fact that her two other cats lived inside while you roamed the Tallahassee streets; I trust you’ll tell me this someday over catnip in your 7th life. When the situation demanded, the lovely Kim took you in next, providing you with even more Florida acreage to roam and call your own. She often talks of how you spent the colder Panhandle nights snuggled atop her stash of firewood, and how more than once she opened the front door to see nothing but bird feathers strewn about the area you called home. And there you were, licking your chops. I never tire of her telling those same stories of you in the pseudo-wild.

I recall that while at Kim’s house, in my last months of graduate school and during a routine afternoon Tally rainstorm, I asked permission to let your begging, drenched self inside. She agreed. You very quietly and politely walked into her living room and eventually positioned yourself on the soft couch next to me. I think I knew I loved you even then, sweet boy. When your next gig was planned as an outdoor cat in North Carolina, I would have nothing of it. If the planets aligned, you would be mine and would roam my first 300-square-foot DC apartment like a warm, city man of the house should. And you filled those shoes beautifully, my dear. After weeks in 2003 spent hiding under the couch cover, you emerged as my companion. A companion that used the litter box from day one. Who slept on my bed as my protector. Who found out he loved yogurt when he first knocked a blueberry Yoplait out of my hands in the initial months of our partnership. Know that behind Cricket’s back I have left the last spoonful for you in each and every container since then. If anything is, this was meant to be, Bug.

So despite our iffy beginnings, know that I can’t imagine my heart being bigger for you, little man. When I stepped into that last examination room on Tuesday, the very one in which I found out only four years earlier that my first kitty had a fatal and equally rare illness to your own, I was prepared to do whatever it took to ensure that our time on this earth together would be as long as possible. And here we are.

I promise to love you even more with your three little legs, Buggles. I promise to kiss this new scar when you’ll let me and help you onto the couch if you should need it. I promise to let you fight dirty if your street cred demands it. I promise to check compulsively for those tiny bumps that we know may come back at any time. I pledge to allow you to steal my full glass of ice water with an extended paw before I take even a first sip. I hereby swear more treats and more eye rubs. I vow to try to be less frustrated when you beg daily for food via nail inserted into my nostril or tear duct. At 5 am.

I vow to be better to you than ever. I hope I have the time to be.

With all my love to you and your sister,
Mom


40 Comments:

Blogger Sizzle said...

i'm all teary reading this. i'm going to go love on my cats now...

thinking good thoughts for you and Bug.

Blogger EDW said...

Ok, I have to go cry by myself now. I get this so, so much. I miss my own boy.

Fingers crossed for both of you tomorrow!

Blogger Jürgen Nation said...

Oh, baby girl. My heart bleeds for you and Le Bug. Thinking good thoughts and sending hugs. Know that this is the best way and I know you do know that. I've doubted very little about you, kiddo (except that you didn't steal my brown shirt at BlogHer last year), and I don't doubt this - you are, always have been and will ALWAYS be a great mom.

Love you and the kids, sunshine.

Blogger Tinsley said...

My thoughts are with you and Bug. Know we (my furkid)are thinking of you both.

Blogger sognatrice said...

Dammit, tears here as well! Many positive thoughts continue to come your way.

Blogger Ulysses said...

Bug reminds me of Logan. I hope everything goes as smoothly as possible today.

Blogger sween said...

I'm. Not. Supposed. To. Cry.

Losing. Street. Cred.

Blogger Melina said...

Crying. I don't know how I'm going to handle anything bad happening to my dogbaby Frankie. Hugs to you and your little furry family.

Blogger Average Jane said...

Poor Bug! The kittehs really know how to grab your heart and hang on.

Blogger JordanBaker said...

God speed, Bug.

Blogger Cinnkitty said...

Oh wow..that was...that was incredibly touching and amazing and sweet and damnit, I cried and I'm at work and I can't rush home and hug my sweet kitty.

Good luck and all our prayers are with you and the Bugster.

I'm sitting here crying...

My best to you both.

Blogger themikestand said...

I'll be working on my Get Well Soon card for Bug. Strength to you both!

Blogger Ripe for Reading said...

Bug is so lucky to have you.

Blogger brookem said...

thinking of your Bug and you very much. :(

Blogger mysterygirl! said...

Ugh, this hurts my heart. Sending good vibes to you and Bug.

Blogger Carrie said...

oh wow...i find your blog today and already we are kindred spirits.

hugs and love to bug and you. he is lucky to have a mom like you!

Holy shit I need a kleenex box. I don't know what I would do if I had to go through that with my kitty.

As a side note, I had a 3-legged kitty growing up and it didn't bother him at all. We named him Tripod (I know, how original).

Best wishes to you and Bug! I'm sure he will be just fine.

SJ

Blogger Heather B. said...

I'm a little teary eyed, but I'm blaming it on a really intense episode of General Hospital and not because of you and Buggles.

Lots of kisses.

Blogger Lord Fondleberries said...

what up chica? i konw it's hard: it was hard when we let chet, who had dropped seemingly overnight from 20 lbs to 5 lbs and immediately into multiorgan failure, go. it was harder still when chet's younger brother limped into the litter box, turned around and shouted the life out of himself right at me. it was so hard that little cleo (apparently i am a mad and crazy cat guy) moped so incredibly that we went and got her sister from another mother to raise her spirits only to find that we'd got her a shiny new punching bag.

captain buggles will emerge, and you'll find yourselves skipping about that 300 sq ft on all five legs soon enough.

huggin and buggin,

lord f

Blogger Jorge said...

Dear Buggles McGee,

Laila and Luthor are having a 24 Hour Eat-a-thon while Mum and Dad are cavortingin wine country.

All five of us, though, are thinking of you, and hope that the adjustment goes smoothly.

We suspect it will, as you are the McGuyver of cats with your clever ways and lovely mane.

Looking forward to seeing you sooner than later...

J, Mrs. J, Squiggles McGee, Laila and Luther.

Blogger egan said...

Good luck to Bug. What a sweet tribute to your kitty. Meow.

Blogger Kerry said...

Best wishes, Bug!!!

Blogger Dave said...

So. Friggin. Sad.

It's powerfully lame for me to send love to your cat, but dammit I'm sending love to you cat.

Blogger Dave said...

And I'm sending to Bug in particular... in case there was any confusion.

Blogger Spazzberry said...

Love to you both from everyone in my furry little family. We're thinking about you guys.

Blogger Christine said...

Bug~ my three kitties (and two kids and one puppy) and I are hoping you are okay.

Blogger snoopy said...

Aww I'm all sniffly now. Sending Bug lots of love & kisses.

BTW I saw a 3-legged dog at the dog beach today and he was having a great time romping in the waves. Bug will be back to leaping up on things he shouldn't be in no time.

Blogger Sarah said...

This is so beatufully written. I hope you have the time too!

omg i'm literally crying right now.

This is so bittwersweet.

Coming out of the land of lurkers to say I hope Bug is doing ok. Barley and I send hugs from Denver.

Blogger mysterygirl! said...

Okay, I think it's time for you to give us an update-- I've been worrying about you and the Buggles...

Blogger hollly said...

Good luck to Bug. I hope the surgery went well?

Blogger Jessica said...

I hope everything went well honey. *hugs* to you and Bug. How is it that they can fill your heart at the same time as they break your heart?

Blogger Fraulein N said...

Aww. Best of luck to you both.

Blogger ByJane said...

isn't it great when you can pour your heart onto the page...how is the Bug now?

Blogger Snowflakewny said...

You sound like an awesome "Mom" - hug that little one for all of us!

Blogger daily editor said...

Awww. I think I need a tissue.

Blogger Angeerah said...

Teary eyed here too. My Irish Wolfhound lost his front left leg to cancer (I write about it on All My Children Meow and Woof) and my seventeen year old cat is heading to the vet tomorrow for bloodwork. I understand feeling like you want to do everything for them and at the same time feeling like you have failed. You are a great cat mom (?) and I hope Bug is well.

Post a Comment

<< Home

footer